Various state-of-the-art features, including virtual reality technology, are being considered for the new home of the New York Islanders NHL ice hockey franchise, according to figures behind the project.
Islanders executives, including co-owner Jon Ledecky, have discussed numerous technology options within Belmont Park arena, whilst being keen to maintain a classic look on the exterior of the development.
“[It will be] a building facade that maintains the [Belmont-style] tradition but inside has everything state of the art,” Ledecky told Newsday.
Ledecky added that there will be “no bad seats,” although fans in some seats could potentially use virtual or augmented reality to get closer to the action.
“Because we’re opening in 2021, we’re spending a lot of time, resources and energy to make sure that we’re right there” on the cutting edge, he said.
The Islanders broke ground on its $1.3bn (£1.05bn/€1.18bn) redevelopment project, which will be anchored by the new 19,000-seat arena, last month.
The project will transform 43 acres of under-utilised parking lots at Belmont Park, with the site set to also include a hotel, retail village, and office and community space. Project developers New York Belmont Partners will also improve two local parks as part of the agreement.
Additionally, a new full-time Long Island Rail Road station will be funded by the developers. The station will provide locals with access to the new arena and the other on-site amenities.
It is hoped the new arena will be completed in time for the 2021-22 NHL season. The Islanders said the construction of the arena, hotel and retail village will create 10,000 jobs over the next two years and generate $2.7bn in economic activity.
Image: New York Islanders